Would coyotes make good pets?

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Sure, coyotes would make great pets if they weren’t vicious, armed with sharp teeth, powerful jaws, long claws, and carrying the same kind of body mass as a medium to large sized dog. Oh, and if they didn’t come with the very real threat of rabies, the high chance of infection with Tularemia, the probable threat of canine distemper or canine hepatitis, which might kill off your dogs, cats, or rabbits, and the mass of mites, mange, ticks, fleas, intestinal worms, and other nasty parasites too.

It’s a pretty extensive and shocking list, and what’s even more shocking is that it’s all true. None of it has been embellished. We are talking about a strong predator that is related to the wolf family, although has a very close bond with the badger. Again, not an embellishment. Coyotes and badgers are commonly observed lending each other a hand in the wild, using their combined skills to forage around in the soil for small, rodent-based prey. There have been quite a few videos on the internet that even show the two animals licking or grooming one another, a seemingly odd move when you consider the badger could realistically be prey and, therefore, food for the coyote.

Coyotes generally avoid all human interaction like the plague, so trying to capture one with the idea of making it your pet is going to be close to impossible. These animals are serial lurkers, hanging around in the shadows but never quite spotted. If you do choose to feed one, or you start leaving food out for any wild animal, coyote, raccoon, opossum, skunk, or any others, you’re running the risk of putting yourself in the direct line of danger. If we take the humble raccoon as a classic example, you’ll see that they can have almost temper tantrum-like hissy fits, usually because the stream of food has been cut short. It is not unheard of for raccoons who have been fed by human hands physically snatching food out of the hands of humans, and even getting snappy and aggressive when they aren’t allowed to have that food.

Although the chances of luring a wild coyote in that close is slim to none, human conditioning has led to animals coming closer to humans than they ever have done before. There is nothing to say the coyote won’t attack when the food source runs dry. The teeth and claws on a coyote are going to do much more damage than a smaller animal, such as a raccoon. Even smaller nuisance wildlife has the opportunity to do some very real damage, and coyotes aren’t exactly what you’d class as small.

One of the biggest problems you’ll be faced with when dealing with a coyote, wild or otherwise, is the threat of attack on children and smaller animals. This will include domesticated cats and dogs, pet rabbits, chickens, and also livestock. Coyotes will happily keep a rat or mouse infestation out too, so you must investigate whether or not you have a rodent problem as well as a coyote problem. There’s a reason those animals keep coming in to take a closer look.

Coyotes are dangerous animals, not just in terms of physical dangers — bites and scratches, etc., but also in terms of disease. Those are all very valid reasons why you wouldn’t want one as a pet in your home.

For more information, you may want to read How to get rid of coyotes or click on one of these guides that I wrote:
How To Guide: Who should I hire? - What questions to ask, to look for, who NOT to hire.
How To Guide: do it yourself! - Advice on saving money by doing wildlife removal yourself.
Guide: How much does wildlife removal cost? - Analysis of wildlife control prices.

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